American Idol Recap: Top 9

29 03 2012

The Top 9 Idol show last night was definitely the best of the season, and arguably the best Idol show I’ve ever seen.

…and I’m not ashamed to admit that I’ve seen a heck of a lot of ‘Idol’ shows in my day. I’ve probably seen every episode, of almost every variation of ‘singing competition’ on TV. Even all the Canadian ones…

So I say this with extensive experience in my pocket, and with sincere reverence for the show that changed modern TV… Last night was absolutely a NEW level of ‘high’ for this show and a swift shot to the juggular of all the shows competing with it.

The format remains unchanged from the first time the ‘Idols’ hit the stage Season 1, the reason producers DONT tweak with the current format is beacuse every year, it is the PERFORMERS that make the show different and memorable. Sometimes, they dont. Remember Diana Degarmo? Exactly.

Last night’s theme was ‘Our Idols’ – meaning the contestants picked songs to sing from their personal favourite artists. And the legend, Stevie Nixx was there as a mentor. Usually, this theme is a recipe for disaster. Songs you belt out in the shower, in the car and infront of a full length mirror have the tendancy to flop on stage. But since the idol have already been forced to sing Whitney, and songs they dont really know… this was probably a relief to most.

In other years, I feel like this wouldve resulted in campy versions of hit songs by artists like Mariah, Usher, Justin Timberlake – current songs that would get them votes rather than actually choosing a classic song from a great artist.

Instead…

Colton – started off the night with waht I thought would be the knock out performance of the night. And it was. His best by far, and maybe even second only to Jessicas Whitney performance. But I could be slightly bias, he sang my absolute favourite song that I didnt think anyone else in the world knew. Everything by Lifehouse is a song I have sang to and cried to more than any other song in my life. Obviously, Colton and I are the same age and apparently were both affected by the haunting melody and beautiful lyrics. He resurrected this song for me, and even for those who didn’t know the tune. I will be downloading this one…

Heejun – was criticized last week for not taking the competition seriously. I was a little worried for him this week, picking his own song. But he, surprisingly, knows his voice VERY well. He chose a song that let us hear the rich tone and vibrato he has when he opens up. He didnt hold back at ALL on this song and it was his best performance by a long shot… He needed that to get back in the game.

Skylar-  Her Idol is Melissa Lambert. Shocker. You can tell she’s like, a mega fan. This song was probably one of the only ones I felt was a little bit too much liek the original, and therefore MORE of a ‘I’ve always wanted to sing this song’ rather than a creative homage. It didnt really show off her vocals, but it DID show her comfort level within the female country rock genre. That’s her ‘thang’.

Jessica- Is just a MASSIVE star. Idol prodicers must be licking their lips and thanking the heavens for finding this one. She is the perfect little Idol package. She has a KILLER voice (she slayed a Beyonce song better than the Queen B herself…) she has amazing stage presence, and a true sense of herself as an artist… oh, and she’s 16. Steven has had hangover that last longer than that.

Joshua– Took on Mariah. I wouldve expected it more from the girls… but Randy is right, this guy has such a special, unique talent that he needs BIG songs to show them off properly. He showed it off alright. Another well deserved standing ovation from the judges. Every week, I feel like we are at a Joshua concert when he steps onto the stage – he is in command, he conncets with the music and the audience is right there with him. Such a pro.

Hollie – Still hasnt found her stride. She sang Jesus Take the Wheel by Carrie Underwood. Yes, it’s a big song. It’s also a shower/car/bedroom song. If you dont do anything to change it, and you dont hit every single note… it’s karaoke (or Carrie-oke…sorry.) If there is justice, Hollie will go home tonight… the other performances of the night were in a different league.

Deandre – Finally got to pick an artist he COULS sing, and chose a soulful Eric Benet song. This is EXACTLY the direction Deandre needs to follow. I wouldnt say that I would pick up an album liek that, BUT I can marvel at the unique, distinct and fresh spin on dated R/B. This song was due for a refresh, and Deandre delivered… wow, that voice.

Philip – I would buy a ticket to a Philip Philips concert in a heartbeat after last night. You know EXACTLY what you’re going to get with this guy. Straight up acoustic rock n roll soul. This guy was going to inherit a pawn shop… now? It felt like a concert, like you didnt want the song to end, it didnt cut off in strange places to get to ‘the chorus’, he rocked out on that stage. The cutest thing in the world, was watching Stevie Nixx fall in love with him too!

Elise– Ended the night with Zepplin. Seriously. Zepplin. Not just Zepplin,  Whole Lotta Love Zepplin. NOBODY can touch songs like that… right? Wrong! Elise absolutely took over the night with her version of that song. It was pure rock n roll, it was new but stayed clsoe to the Plant original. Her vocals were spot on, and I wish she could sing 70’s rock every week. Holy smokes, girl can KILL a classic rock song like no other… who knew?!

Now you can see how Jesus Take the Wheel was a bit…underwhelming?

Everyone pulled out the big guns and had a Star Moment of their own on stage las tnight. Who the HECK will go home tonight, I don’t want to be disappointed after such an unforgettable night.

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